I love looking at the fresh baked breads in the bakery section of the grocery store. French bread, ciabatta bread, shepherder's bread, they all look so good. But, the one that especially calls out to me is the focaccia bread. How can you possibly resist something that looks like a pizza?
Well, difficult though it may be, I do resist after seeing the $4 price tag on it. How can something made out of flour, water, yeast, and a little olive oil possibly cost so much? Wait a minute. I have all those ingredients at home. Surely I could make my own, right? Thanks to the King Arthur Flour site, I found out that anyone can make focaccia. In fact, it's so quick and easy that the recipe is called, "Blitz Bread or No-Fuss Focaccia."
All you have to do is mix up your ingredients and put the dough into a baking pan with a little olive oil in it. Let it rise, drizzle with a little more oil, season to your liking, and bake. That's it. No "secret" ingredients or complicated techniques. Soon, you'll be taking a gorgeous loaf of focaccia out of your oven and wondering why you've never done this before.
The finished focaccia was so good. It was fluffy and flavorful and every bit as good as anything from the grocery store, even better because it was fresh. This may have been my first focaccia but it most certainly will not be my last.
No-Fuss Focaccia (aka Blitz Bread) - adapted from King Arthur Flour
3/4 c. warm water
1 Tbsp. olive oil (plus additional for drizzling)
5/8 tsp. salt
1 3/4 c. all-purpose flour
1 1/2 tsp. active dry yeast
2 tsp. sugar
2 tsp. Italian seasoning
1 tomato, de-seeded and sliced
Combine the warm water with the active dry yeast and the 2 tsp. sugar. Let stand until foamy, about 5-10 min.
Add the flour and salt gradually to the yeast mixture, about 1/2 cup at a time, until your dough no longer sticks to the sides of the bowl (the dough will be very soft).
Drizzle 1/2 Tbsp. olive oil into a 9-inch round cake pan. Place the dough into the pan. Cover and let rise for 60 min., till it's become puffy. (Note: the risen dough will be super sticky so make sure that whatever you use to cover it will not touch the dough by the end of the hour or you can grease the plastic wrap) While the dough is rising, preheat your oven to 375F. Gently poke the risen dough all over with your index finger. Drizzle it lightly with the remaining olive oil and sprinkle with Italian seasoning. Top with the tomato slices. Bake the bread till it's golden brown, about 35-40 min.
- The recipe as written here is for a half batch. If you bake the full batch, KAF directs you to make it in a 9x13 pan.
- I adapted this recipe so that it could be made without a stand mixer and using active dry yeast instead of instant yeast.
- My gas oven doesn't brown bread at all, so I baked mine for about 32 min., then put it under the broiler for 2 min. It browned up beautifully. If you do this, make sure you watch it well because you don't want it to go from browned to burnt.
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